Pope awards knighthood to Jewish Rabbi

On March 22, 2007, Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley announced that His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, has named Rabbi Leon Klenicki to the Papal Order of St. Gregory.

The Cardinal said, “Rabbi Klenicki has been a pioneer in Jewish-Catholic relations for decades. His own personal experiences of anti-Semitism led the Rabbi to be a passionate advocate for education as means of dispelling religious prejudice and promoting interreligious collaboration.”

The Cardinal noted that, “On the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the Warsaw ghetto uprising, Pope John Paul II said, ‘As Christians and Jews, following the example of the faith of Abraham, we are called to be a blessing to the world. This is the common task awaiting us. It is therefore necessary for us, Christians and Jews, to first be a blessing to one another.’ Rabbi Leon Klenicki’s life has been the source of blessings for all of us. We are deeply grateful for his witness and his work.”

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